“Grief is a most peculiar thing; we’re so helpless in the face of it. It’s like a window that will simply open of its own accord. The room grows cold, and we can do nothing but shiver. But it opens a little less each time, and a little less; and one day we wonder what has become of it.”
― Arthur Golden, Memoirs of a Geisha
“Life Lesson 3: You can’t rush grief. It has its own timetable. All you can do is make sure there are lots of soft places around — beds, pillows, arms, laps.”
― Patti Davis, Two Cats and the Woman They Own: or Lessons I Learned from My Cats
Even in this place of limbo, not knowing what can be saved, I know what has been irretrievably lost. I know that parts of me are wounded and will be forever scarred, though I do not know the full extent of our injuries, yet. He is still grieving, as I am grieving, those lost things. And so, we cannot yet come back to sort through the rubble, and figure out what we might salvage. Near silence is all we can manage today.
I cannot write, cannot think clearly, cannot keep the tears at bay. Grief for what has died consumes me, and though I force myself out of bed in the mornings, eat healthy meals, drink plenty of water, do some yoga and read to encourage my writing — the window of grief flings open wide and I am wracked with pain, shivering with the freezing cold. Soon blinded by tears, I am searching for soft places to fall.
There are those who hold my hands, offer hugs, whisper in the darkness, words of love and support. I am not alone. This I know. My husband is faithful by my side, calling to double-check, whether I need anything from the grocery store, making me hot tea, offering me a blanket and pillows, holding me silently as I cry. My new love reaches out to me from his own chaos, assures me that I am in his heart, that he will stay beside me until joy replaces sorrow, whispers words of hope for love not yet dead but so very, deeply wounded.
And neither of them speaks a negative or judgmental word. Instead they bring consolation. Both acknowledge his humanity, my humanity — and the difficulty of transition when love is still strong, and painful. They honor him. They honor me. I am so very blessed.
Today I’ve done what I could to be healthy. I have exhausted myself with this business of living, and will soon retire to my bed. I’ll hide beneath the covers, and soak my heart in tears. Soon, someone who loves me will come to comfort, to join their heart to mine, and I will breathe in their strength. I will be gentle with myself, and rest until this day is done.
Tomorrow, the distant sun will still rise, and the cold wind of grief will blow.
I will survive.